197611 Geriatric social workers: Leading the change required to make the public healthy

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 10:50 AM

Jeannine Melly, MPH , Social Work Leadership Institute, The New York Academy of Medicine, New York, NY
Jarmin Yeh, MSSW, MPH , Social Work Leadership Institute, The New York Academy of Medicine, New York, NY
Carin Tinney, LMSW , Social Work Leadership Institute, The New York Academy of Medicine, New York, NY
Patricia Volland, MSW, MBA , Social Work Leadership Institute, The New York Academy of Medicine, New York, NY
Over the next decade, training new professionals to provide leadership in aging services is imperative as the number of older Americans is predicted to double by 2030. Understanding which factors influence leadership development among emerging professionals to supply this demand is essential to create learning environments where skill and expertise can develop to ensure a strong healthcare workforce for the future. In geriatrics where public health and social service infrastructures must intersect to meet challenges of an aging society, leadership development is especially important. In meeting public health's mission to fulfill society's interest in assuring conditions in which people can be healthy, core competencies – including a leadership domain – have been developed for master-level training. Master-level social work programs, however, may be doing more by establishing explicit practice standards for leadership competence specifically in aging. The New York Academy of Medicine's Social Work Leadership Institute (SWLI) has developed competencies in the practice environment of aging which fosters the concept of leadership early among graduates and provides professional opportunities and linkages. Social workers are practice leaders who should be trained and called upon to direct and advance efforts to link health and social services and promote aging services. This presentation will discuss the establishment and implementation of leadership competencies in social work education; share students' perceptions and experiences of their leadership development and the creation of a national leadership network of graduates; and discuss the potential benefits and limitations of adopting leadership competencies in aging for public health education.

Learning Objectives:
Identify the demographic trends requiring new social work professionals to take leadership positions in aging services. Understand which factors influence leadership development among emerging social work professionals in aging. Recognize the geriatric social work leadership competencies in the practice environment of aging. Identify two ways geriatric leadership competencies can be developed or integrated into public health education.

Keywords: Education, Competency

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Jeannine Melly is Deputy Director of The New York Academy of Medicine’s Social Work Leadership Institute. Before joining SWLI, she worked in The Academy’s Division of Health Policy and spent 13 years at a New Jersey nonprofit, developing and running housing programs for people living with HIV and managing fundraising initiatives. Ms. Melly also has experience in direct service to inmates, the homeless, and women with substance use difficulties. She is chair of the HIV Law Project Board of Directors, and has served as a member of the New Jersey Women and AIDS Network's Board of Directors. Ms. Melly holds a master’s degree in public health from the Hunter College Program in Urban Public Health and a bachelor’s degree in social work from Livingston College, Rutgers University.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.